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How to Successfully Buy Your First Home in Oregon in 2018

Are you thinking about making your first home purchase in Oregon in 2018? If so, keep reading. Here’s a look at home prices, real estate market trends, and other information related to buying a home in Oregon in 2018.

First-Time Buyers Encountering Higher Prices

According to the latest housing reports, the median home value across the state of Oregon rose to around $315,000 as of September 2017. That was an increase of nearly 10% over the same month a year earlier. In Portland, the median home value is roughly $100,000 higher than the statewide median.

That’s the first thing to know when buying your first home in 2018. Buyers are encountering higher house prices, compared to those who purchased over the last couple of years.

As a result, it’s important to enter the real estate market with a realistic sense of what you can get for the money. First-time buyers in Oregon can benefit from doing some price research, while paying particular attention to recent sales prices.

Housing Inventory Still Limited Across Oregon

The entire Pacific Northwest has suffered from a lack of housing inventory over the last couple of years. This is particularly noticeable in major cities like Seattle and Portland. It’s another important trend that all home buyers should know about.

If you are buying your first home in Oregon in 2018, you could experience a high level of competition due to limited supply. First-time buyers should be well prepared, with pre-arranged financing and awareness of local market conditions.

Mortgage Rates Are Expected to Rise Gradually

When this article was published, toward the end of September 2017, the average rate for a 30-year fixed home loan was 3.83%. That’s based on the weekly industry survey conducted by Freddie Mac.

Rates have been hovering below 4%, on average, for many weeks. This is good news for first-time home buyers in Oregon, because it represents an opportunity to save money.

Related: Frequently asked mortgage questions

But there’s no telling how long rates will remain at their current low level. And recent industry forecasts suggest it might not last for long. For instance, the Mortgage Bankers Association recently updated its long-range forecasts for the housing market and economy. The industry group expects 30-year mortgage rates to rise gradually through the end of this year and into 2018.

Granted, these are just predictions. But if they turn out to be accurate, those who end up buying a home in Oregon later in 2018 could entire higher house prices and interest rates. It makes a pretty good case for buying sooner rather than later.

Is It Getting Easier to Get a Home Loan in Oregon?

Yesterday we wrote about a mortgage lender survey conducted by Fannie Mae, which indicated that mortgage loan requirements in Oregon and across the country have eased in recent months. It’s a trend we’ve covered before, and it’s something you should know about when buying your first home in Oregon 2018.

The bottom line here is that you don’t need perfect credit and a down payment of 20% to buy a house in Oregon. Nor do you have to be debt-free to qualify for a home loan.

In fact, mortgage requirements have eased a bit over the last couple of years. Most of the financing programs available today have some degree of flexibility. For some first-time buyers in Oregon, this could simplify the path to homeownership.

Let’s explore your options. We’ve been helping home buyers across the Pacific Northwest for more than 20 years. Please contact us if you have mortgage-related questions about buying a home in Oregon.

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